As the calendar turns to 2017 and we begin a new year, many of us create a list of New Year’s resolutions to take us forward. This year, one resolution that should be on many managers’ lists is employing mobile apps to help boost worker productivity with renewed vigor.
Mobile devices have changed business and communication in transformative ways, and using mobile apps can help boost employee productivity and satisfaction to create better business outcomes. Since more than two-thirds of individuals in the U.S. now carry a smartphone, and as consumers we spend 40 percent of our online time on mobile devices, now is the time to introduce mobile apps to drive more efficient work.
Boosting Employee Productivity
In a survey conducted by mobile Helix, employers estimated that adopting mobile apps would boost employee productivity by 40 percent, and when one Australian company migrated it core HR systems to mobile apps it saw a 500 percent increase in adoption and a huge increase in employee satisfaction and productivity.
With the right productivity apps and services at your fingertips, you can increase your efficiency and get more done. But not all apps are created equal. What features can help boost business productivity?
- Alerts and notifications. System reminders can engage employees by nudging them to complete important tasks like clocking out, submitting expenses, or filing reports.
- Data protection and safeguards. Since WMS systems house confidential employee information, the security of mobile apps is crucial to safeguard personal data. Security features can include app time-outs that automatically log out users after a certain period of inactivity; mobile device registration; and limited app functionality in case of device theft or loss.
- Versatility to adjust to the way employees work. Apps need to reflect how its users work in order to help them be more efficient. Sometimes, one app will not work for employees and managers; be sure to offer the apps that fit the way your employees work.
So how do you weed through the 900,000 apps available in the Apple App Store to find the ones that work the best for you? From Workforce Management to Conference Calling or time/task management or List-making or even password keepers, the list of available productivity apps is almost endless. Here are some apps that can help boost worker productivity in significant ways.
Our Favorite Productivity Apps
Keeper (password management). This app provides impenetrable security for your passwords and digital assets, safeguarding your information from hackers and cyber criminals. Keeper generates strong passwords, autofills passwords across your apps and sites with KeeperFill™ and organizes passwords on all platforms and devices. This handy app keeps all your passwords behind a single master password that wipes your secrets if a hack is attempted.
“When our office was broken into eighteen months ago and my desktop was stolen I panicked. Everything I owned was accessible from that note list on it. My mortgages, my shares, my savings accounts; someone could basically have accessed each and every part of my life and my business. I decided something more secure was needed because I’d got too used to the simplicity of having everything in one place. Keeper was the answer to my prayers!” Scott Seaman-Digby, Hawtrey Dene, told LifeHack.
Speek (conference calling). This app simplifies conference calling, eliminating the need for dial-ins, PINs or downloads. Conference calling is an important aspect of doing business, enabling teams and individuals working in different locations to connect, brainstorm, plan, or discuss. With Speek, the users pick a personal link that replaces traditional PIN or phone numbers and share it with the other calls. When they want to join the call, they just click that link from their mobile device to join in, with no third parties, hold music or other distractions.
“Being able to share information with our team, often when we are out on the road, is a crucial part of our business. So Speek allows us to do that with minimum fuss,” explained Lorraine Barker, of Workfish.
Shoeboxed (expense claiming). This free app helps make expense claiming a breeze, allowing users to scan and organize receipts and business cards, create expense reports, track mileage and more. The app not only collects and organizes expenses, but can also generate the reports for submission, allowing users to send them right from the app. This app is great for frequent business travelers or salespeople who must keep track of reams of paperwork and hundreds of business contacts.
Andrew Strain, of No.1 Traveller, told Life Hack, “Shoeboxed is an app that businesses of any size should be using. I don’t have to hold onto endless amounts of receipts when I’m away on business anymore or spend time putting an expense report together when I’m back – Shoeboxed does it all for me.”
Any.do (collaborative task-management). This collaborative or personal task-management app for iOS, Android and Chrome has a unique facture that reminds you to make a habit of reviewing your daily task list first thing each morning in order to remain prepared for the day’s responsibilities. Never be caught off guard again, promoting productivity and positive results.
Asana (collaborative workplace management). Asana was among the first collaborative workplace management tools to help transform how teams get work done together. It helps teams track tasks that need to be completed providing both visibility into work and accountability. It is being utilized by large and small businesses alike to help manage products, wean employees from email, and inspire a new approach to work.
Creating Your Own Productivity Apps
At the heart of every great productivity app is a solution to a specific problem. Some look toward efficiency, aiming to take an existing product, such as email, and make it easier to use so we waste less time futzing with it. Others seek to silence the noise of the net, bolster collaboration, or unite disparate data.
Employers should select mobile apps that engage employees with alerts and notification, safeguard confidential information, and reflect how users work. Usability plus functionality make productivity apps shine. Let AppSheet help you develop your own unique productivity apps to meet your specific employee goals and needs.